Flipboard’s already one of the best ways to read and discover web content on the iPad and iPhone, and now they’re taking that to the next level, integrating e-book discovery by tapping right into the Apple iBookstore. It’s like browsing in a virtual e-book shop.
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After an anti-trust lawsuit was launched by the European Union earlier this year to check whether or not Apple’s e-book pricing is anti-competitive, Apple and four publishers are ready to accept an offer from the EU to end the probe.
The acceptance of the offer hands Amazon a big victory in the battle for e-book pricing in Europe as it opens the door for Amazon to continue to sell online books cheaper than its rivals.
It’s no secret that Apple often takes a puritanical view of art featuring human anatomy — the flapping genitalia, dewy folds and turgid protuberances that some of us find so arousing and others find a moral failing — at least when it comes to being submitted to the App Store or iBookstore.
So it’s no surprise that when Danish author Peter Øvig Knudsen submitted his latest work of non-fiction, Hippie 2, to the iBookstore, the e-book was rejected based upon the fact that it contained forty-seven photographs of hairy frolicking hippies with exposed breasts, buttocks and genitals.
What is more surprising is that they also rejected Knudsen’s resubmitted version of the text, which featured all of the photos censored with giant red apples.
With every major release of iOS and a new iPhone, Apple typically offers its official user guide online for free. What’s odd is that Apple doesn’t promote this resource at all, yet it’s still available. Each iOS device purchase comes with a little booklet to help familiarize a new customer with the basics of the device and iOS itself, but the full user guide is much more thorough and extensive.
In what was undoubtedly an ironic coincidence involving Apple’s automated profanity filters, the title of Naomi Wolf’s new book Vagina — which is about how society chauvinistically stigmatizes the female sexual origin into something so profane it can not be talked about — was briefly censored in the iTunes Store.
In a somewhat ironic move, the U.S. government has entered into an ebook deal with Apple that will see a range of government reports, documents, and ebooks published in Apple’s iBookstore. The partnership, which was announced earlier this week, coincides with the Department of Justice’s latest legal filings in its anti-trust suit against Apple.
The deal with the Government Printing Office (GPO) will make a wide swath of documents and ebooks available through the iBookstore. While some government documents are available for free, a number of documents and full-length ebooks are not.
Working On An Ebook Using iBooks Author? These Template Packages Can Make It Look Like A Masterpriece
Although Apple pitched iBooks Author as a tool for educators, the company fully supports anyone who want to create an ebook using iBooks Author to do so. Apple also lets anyone that creates an ebook with iBooks Author to distribute it through the iBookstore – the catch being that the iBooks Author edition of an ebook can’t be published using another company’s store (though the text of the title can be repackaged using other apps and sold elsewhere). As usual, Apple will take a 30% cut of any sales.
There are, of course, plenty of non-education uses for iBooks Author.
During its education event in January, Apple unveiled its plans to revolutionize the K-12 classroom with the iPad, electronic textbooks, a revamped version of iTunes U that supports content for K-12 schools as well as higher education, and tools for educators to create their own digital content using iBooks Author and iTunes U.
In the intervening months, schools and districts around the country have made significant investments in iPads, including the San Diego Unified School District, which invested $15 million in 26,000 iPads for its students. Those sales created a record quarter for Apple in the K-12 education market.
With the back to school season upon us, it’s clear that the massive iPad deployments will give Apple the opportunity to disrupt the classroom in the ways it has whole industries and, in many ways, that’s a good thing.
Apple kicked off 2012 with its education event in New York. At that event, the company announced its electronic textbooks for iPad initiative, iBooks Author, and the revamped iTunes U. According the Apples latest financial data, the education initiative has paid off with both iPads and Macs being purchased by schools in record numbers.
A 21st century vision of education , however, is about more than getting the iPads and MacBooks into the classroom. It also requires technology goals, professional development for teachers, high-speed access to up-to-date content, education-centric portals for students and teachers, back-end systems, and education apps or software.
The TED organization, which sponsors a range of conferences and talks on cutting edge topics recently launched an ebook series known as TED Books. Like the non-profit’s other initiatives, TED Books are “designed to spread great ideas.” Sticking to that ideal, the organization is making the ebooks, which will be released every two weeks, available across a range of ebook platforms including the new TED Books app for iOS devices.
The move highlights one of the challenges about ebooks – the choice of merchant and platform. That’s a particular concern when it comes to Apple’s iBookstore because purchases can only be read on an iOS device.